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Magghia Masculina

The Gulf of Catania is still crossed every day by small fishing boats. In April, they begin catching Masculina anchovies, lowering “tratte”, a type of drift net. The right time is in the depths of the night, just before dawn. This technique has been practiced throughout the Mediterranean since the time of Homer. The heads of the anchovies become caught in the mesh of the net, known as the “maglie”, hence the name Magghia. This creates a natural bleeding, which produces a tastier and more prized fish.

The Presidium unites the eight fishermen from the local cooperative, who have been fishing, processing and directly selling their catch for years. The Masculina anchovies are sold fresh in the market in Piazza Pardo in Catania ('a Piscaria) or salted by the fishermen in "cugnitti", traditional cylindrical ceramic pots of various sizes with wooden stoppers. The salting technique is the same throughout the Mediterranean, but the fishermen also make a special preserve for their own consumption during the long hours spent at sea, using the pieces of anchovies and the heads that remain stuck in the mesh of the nets.

Production area
Gulf of Catania

 


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In this section, we'll be celebrating all the men and women in our networks: fishermen and fisherwomen, fish farmers, cooks, consumers, journalists, educators, volunteers, convivium members and many more, who are all taking big or small steps towards producing and consuming fish responsibly.

To tell us your story, write to: slowfish@slowfood.com

 

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